Saturday, March 29, 2014

Rabbit Chase Window Tote Box Construction

Just in time for Easter treat gifting
is this unique little window tote box, 
now available from SnapDragon Snippets
through the Silhouette America online store.
The interior dimensions are 5" wide x 3.5" tall x 1.75" deep.

1. Identify the cut shapes:
A. box front with window
B. box back
C. window opening contrast liner
D. mylar rectangle window
E. front/sides scallop strip
F. back scallop strip
G. front/sides strip
H. back strip
I. mini hearts
J. bunny body base
K. bunny front body
L. bunny head with eye dot
M. bunny contrast tummy
N. bunny contrast tail

2. Fold the  box back (shown here) and box front back on all perforations, except forward at the handle top perforation as shown.

NOTE: liner and mylar shapes (steps 3 & 4) can be positioned after the box front & back are joined, in step 5, if preferred. Doing this will mean the side seam of box front will glue to the box shape, not to the liner and mylar, and may mean getting a better attachment.

3. Attach (C) window opening contrast liner behind box front window opening so that an equal margin shows from the front.

4. Attach clear mylar rectangle on backside of window opening and liner shapes.

5. Join the front to back on one side side, then adjust the shapes by re-folding on the perforations to join the other side seam.

6. Position front scallop strip, centered, over the window, aligning perforations at corners. Glue to the box front at side of each window, then continue to wrap the strip to the back, fold tabs at ends to back side of box and secure. NOTE: scallop strip and strip do NOT have end perforations in order to allow a custom fit, depending on the paper weight/thickness you may be using.

7. Position and attach the back scallop strip on box back so that ends line up with previously attached front/sides strip.

8. Repeat the process for the straight strips, centering front, then back on the scallop strips.

9. Assemble the bunny decoration, beginning with base shape that will show to the front the back (bottom) leg and top (front) ear, then adding the body front, then the head.

When these shapes are in place, finish by placing the eye over the marked dot on head, fitting the tummy into place at lower body edge, tail over base shape.

10. Center the bunny and glue to the scallop band assembly. Attach each heart an equal distance from bunny at scallop band center.

11. Fold back lower section under, then front section that includes latch. Slide the latch into the slot to close. NOTE: the latch is made to fit very snugly into the opening, so you will need to angle and manipulate the side ends of the latch into the slot. Secure edges by applying adhesive (dry) before inserting latch, OR (wet) after the latch is in place, under the top outer edge (front) section. Be sure to "square up" the box before the adhesive is secure.

12. To latch handles (after contents are in place), bring the front and back together, then push through the half circles from the front, into the matching cut-outs on the back, and fold upward. Use a dry sticky dot to hold these in place, if necessary or desired, for a better closure.

Here, again, is the finished tote box.
You may be able to find other, seasonal decorations to size to fit in place instead of the bunny. Or use the tote with scallop trim strips decoration by itself.

For an extra decorative touch, tie a length of coordinated ribbon through the handles. 

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Chick 3D "Box" Construction Tutorial

This little "peeper" is a cut file design by Jodi G. Warner 
is  availablefrom SnapDragon Snippets - NOW through
Silhouette America's online store, and soon through SVG Attic.
Cut from cardstock and assembled as a lid and a base
(somewhat like a box, though it is not recommended
to put anything much heavier than air inside)
which measures approx. 4.5" tall x 3.5" front to back x 2" side to side.

1. Identify and cut the pieces:
A. "lid" upper body sides
B. wing
C.upper body "boxing"
D. top crest pieces (3)
E. beak
F. layered eyes & pupils
G. "base" lower body sides
H. lower body "boxing"
I. leg tubes
J. layered feet
K. coin weight or "ballast"
M. stir straw sections for leg        reinforcements
Also shown: 2 small eyelets

2. Position and attach the wings to each upper body side piece. Note that the wing tip aligns with the tail edge near upper back.

Put a little glue around the eyelet hole area between the two pieces and leave the rest un-glued. Attach eyelet. Curl the tip a little bit so that it will extend slightly away from the body.

Don't want the eyelet detail? The cut file includes optional pieces without the punch holes.

3. Fold upper boxing tabs inward, and body sections inward, except for the perforation lines where tabs have nearly NO angle. Triangle cutout for nose is head end; narrower end is tail end.

(When counting perf lines from the left on this image - that is, from the tail end - fold outward at the first and fourth lines.)

4. Position the boxing strip next to one of the body sections. Locate the boxing's center longest segment (includes the top crest slot) and attach it with glue so that tab perforation aligns exactly at body straight edge, segment ends line up with boxing's angles.

5. Align and attach one or two segments at a time, toward head end, then toward tail end until boxing is fully attached to the first side. Repeat the process for the second side.

6. Assemble the head crest by gluing the three layers together (tab-less crest between the other two), keeping bottom tabs free. 

7. Insert tabs into slot, then fold each tab toward outward to the sides. Glue tabs in place in the body interior.

8. Fold the nose shape inward on perforations. Fold tabs outward.

9. Fold the nose into a pyramid, with the end triangle side tab (without a lower edge tab) sliding under the opposite triangle shape. Glue triangle tab in place.

10. Insert nose pyramid into the triangle opening from inside the body, with the base edge (marked with tiny circle in tab) at the bottom position. Glue tabs in place inside the body.

Here is the upper body assembly to this point:

11. Assemble each eye by layering the 3 largest circles (largest on bottom, smallest on top) with the pupil circle centered on very top. Position and glue near top of head.

12. Fold the lower body boxing shape inward on all segment perforations, and fold all tabs tack.
13. Attach a coin weight (or washer) to the backside of the boxing in the segment that is marked with the tiny circles in the tabs. Use a good adhesive such as hot glue or Fabri-Tac.

(Weight will help the chick stand better, and can be added after construction is completed, if preferred.)

14. Line up one lower body side with corresponding segment of lower boxing, with the side longest edge (center bottom) next to the triangle holes segment. Attach tab to side body, then attach other tabs in sequence to complete the first side attachment.

15. Repeat the process to attach the second lower body side.

16. Fold each leg shape into a triangular "tube" with the tab inserted under the opposite edge.

17. Glue the tab under the opposite side edge. It will be easier to apply pressure if a long section of the stir straw can be inserted into the tube. 

18. Insert "short tabs" end of leg through a foot triangle opening, from (top to underside). Fold tabs outward and glue in place.

19. Attach the second foot shape onto the bottom of the leg/foot unit. When dry, attach the third foot shape.

20. Repeat steps 18-19 for the other leg and foot shapes.

21. Insert the leg top into the triangle opening on lower body. NOTE that the front of leg "straight" edge should be oriented toward the corresponding straight triangle opening edge in order to have the feet face forward appropriately.

On the inside, fold the tabs outward and glue in place. TRIM with scissor tips the corner of the side-most tab if it seems to touch the body side.

Repeat for the other leg.

22. To add stability and strength to the legs, insert a 1.5" length of plastic stir straw into each leg channel through the opening visible inside the lower body. Here, I have used a longer straw section to insert into the channel. When fully inserted, trim off the excess straw approx. .5" above the opening.

23. Assemble the completed chick by inserting the base into the bottom of the lid. NOTE that the two will fit snugly, and that the tabs that are in place inside the lid may interfere with the complete insertion. Wiggle and otherwise manipulate the two until they are as completely joined as possible.

24. If desired, insert an 18" length of narrow ribbon through the scalloped chest slots on the lower body front. Re-insert base into lid.

With ribbon centered, ends can be brought to the top of the chick's head and tied neatly into a bow behind the head crest.

Your chick is now

Happy Spring!

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Hat's Off Greeting Card Construction Tips

New greeting card design is available now
(and a companion A-7 envelope with additional cut phrases, too)
from SnapDragon Snippets through Silhouette America online store.
Cut file features two versions of outline cut-out of cheery lady lifting her hat
in salute and congratulations.
Review some of the construction steps which follow
before preparing your own cards.

Here is a preview of my two completed cards. The one-cut version is on the left, and the "fill-in" no-frame version is on the right.

First, I will work on my one-cut card version.
Before sending the cut file to your Cameo, make sure your knife blade is sharp (i.e. new). Having a good-stick mat may also be helpful. Since it is the OUTLINE we are saving to use in this step, use the spatula tool to help loosen the cut cardstock from the mat. Loosen the entire design and avoid tearing by resisting the temptation to simply "peel" the cut sections away.

Save the "face" with eye cutouts to help position eyes in a later step.

Applying adhesive to the narrow outline is a bit tedious. Using a good spray adhesive to the backside is one good alternative.

Once glue is applied to this one-cut version, turn it over and position it on the cut card front, taking care to line up the card and outer frame edges before allowing the interior portions to stick in place. (It may be helpful to work folded card.)

Use the "waste" face section to help locate the eyes position if you wish, then glue the eyes in place.

Also position and glue the phrase in place. Easiest order is the "off", then the "hat's" on the same imaginary baseline.

(Missing from my card are all the little pieces, like the apostrophe and the dot-dot-dots after the "off", which need to be positioned and glued in place individually. These got scattered from my work table in an uncontrolled gust of interior air movement, and could not be found when needed. Probably won't happen for you!)

On the back of my one-cut card, I used the flowers pair as a flourish.

The next images are for the backside fill-in version using the no-frame cut version.

Here you can see the separate hand/arm/hat cut-out outline piece, with the separate sleeve fill-in cut-out being positioned behind the outline. Fill and cut-out pieces will have much of their outer edges line up when positioned correctly.

In turn, the hand fill-in will be glued into position, with its bottom edge nudged up against the top of the sleeve fill in piece.

Here you can see the same portion of the outline with the sleeve fill-in in place. The straight side and short bottom edges of the fill-in piece will line up against the corresponding edges of the card's front edges.

With the other fill-in pieces glued in place, I am ready to apply adhesive to the whole section's back side, then position onto the card front with edges aligned as noted in previous frame.

The head/face section is pre-assembled in a similar fashion. Here you can see the top hair outline being positioning ONTO the hair fill-in shape. Next would come the lower hair outline, then the face fill in is positioned from the back side more like the arm fill in the previous frames.

And, once again, here are my finished cards.
Though not shown, the flower accent for the card back
can be assembled with separately-cut fill-in shapes
in a similar process.
I have prepared my cards to send to special recipients:
one to the orthopedic surgeon,
and the other to the nursing crew at the surgical center --
great folks who have recently cared for me through
shoulder rotator cuff surgery.

(Bet you have a few people to recognize and thank, too!)